7 Best Walks in LA

From hardcore hikes to easy strolls, meanders in the woods to ambles in the park, there are plenty of places in Los Angeles to keep all kinds of walkers happy. So, what are you waiting for? It’s time to lace up those sturdy shoes and embrace the great outdoors with our guide to some of the best walks in LA, California.

7 Scenic Walks in LA

1. Palos Verdes Stairs

Like a challenge? Then you will love powering up the Palos Verdes Stairs. This is a steep climb with 273 steps, but it is worth it for the sweeping ocean views and miles of canyon hikes. On most days, you can see Catalina Island, and on those super clear days, you can spot San Clemente Island and the Channel Islands.

2. Runyon Canyon

This is the walk for you if you want steep inclines and beautiful cityscape views, all while in Hollywood’s heart. Its proximity to the city makes it extremely popular, so there are always people around. This is really good from a safety point of view if you want to go for a scenic walk on your own. The main hike is about 2.7 miles long and takes roughly 90 minutes to complete, but you should factor in plenty of time to stop and take in the views, especially that of the Hollywood sign.

3.  Pasadena Rose Bowl

This quiet, uncrowded route is mostly in the shade, so it is a great option for those sunny hot days. The walk borders Brookside Golf & Country Club, and when there has been lots of rain, there is a stream crossing, so make sure you wear shoes or sneakers that you don’t mind getting wet. The walk starts just north of the Rose Bowl, and you’ll journey under oak trees, along a babbling brook and to the Devil’s Gate cove, where you can admire the street art.

4. The Sara Wan Trailhead

The Sara Wan Trailhead rewards its walkers with incredible ocean and mountain views. It also immerses the walker in wildlife and nature. You’ll walk through landscapes with colourful wildflowers and coastal sage scrub and spot many lizards and rabbits. This trail has no shade, so make sure you come prepared. When you reach the first fork in the trail, head to the left. This way, on your descent, you’ll have uninterrupted ocean views of Santa Monica’s beaches all the way to Point Dume.

5. Limekiln Canyon Park

Limekiln Canyon Park in Northridge is an expansive green valley with many hiking and jogging trails, plus picnic areas. It is a very scenic walk in LA. We recommend starting near the intersection of Rinaldi Street and Tampa Avenue and following the sign for the trail. You’ll pass along a pretty creek in the shade of sycamore, willow, pine and redwood trees.

best walks in LA

6. Betty B. Dearing Trail

This city walk is five miles long and takes about 2 hours to complete. Following the trail, you’ll journey through three Los Angeles parks, Wilacre, Fryman Canyon, and Coldwater Canyon. This walk is great for those hot summer days as plenty of shade offers a bit of respite from the heat. This moderately-challenging trail rewards walkers with stellar views of the Valley.

best walks in LA

7. Echo Mountain via Sam Merrill Trail, Altadena

A sign at the beginning of the Sam Merrill Trail reads, “a quiet refuge from people and wild life forever”.  The trail is five miles long and takes around three and a half hours to complete. But we highly suggest packing a picnic and taking lots of breaks to soak in the scenery and serenity. The views of Downtown LA, San Gabriel Valley, and Pasadena are breathtaking.

best walks in LA

Melanie May

Melanie is an intrepid solo traveller, endlessly curious about people, places and food. She is a fan of slow travel and loves exploring the world by mouth, discovering a culture through its food. Having backpacked her way around the world she turned her wanderlust into a career and is now a full-time travel writer.

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